A question that I have often been asked, and something I’ve gotten stuck with myself is how do you decide on a domain name?
This can almost go on endlessly if you allow it to. It can prevent you from even getting started on your business idea in the first place, because you really want that perfect domain name. And perfection doesn’t exist.
You might find a cool domain name that’s available and then get excited about it. Then you realise there are another 15 domain name choices available.
Then you may think of a great idea, then realise that it’s taken. Something else might be for sale, and then you think about whether it’s worth the price.
The first thing I’d recommend is to take a step back from this stressful process and think long term.
Due to new releases of domain extensions, there are literally hundreds of domain extensions and thousands of possible combinations. From the famous .com to .yoga and .global. The possibilities are virtually endless.
Let me tell you one thing that might help lift the weight off your shoulders. The domain name that you start with doesn’t matter too much, it’s what you actually do with it once you’ve made the decision. That’s what matters the most.
A short snappy domain name might help, but I’d rather have a longer domain name and have a very well executed business, than an amazingly short easy domain name with a poor website which doesn’t serve me at all.
You may have heard before that the idea is 1%, and the execution of that idea is 99%. I believe this to be particularly true when you are choosing a domain name.
Here are 5 ideas to help you choose your domain name wisely (stress-free!):
1. How about your name brand?
This is my favourite option and the one I use. Your name as a brand is going to last as long as you live and will always be relevant.
And if you’re anything like me, you may have multiple interests. You also may not know what you’ll be passionate about in the future. Perhaps something that interested you in the past isn’t interesting to you now.
If you’d bought a specific domain name like greatveganreceipestoday.com, you might be a little stuck if you wanted to expand on that idea.
The great advantage of a personal brand is that you are truly unique. No business, large or small can compete with you and your specific point of view.
That said, a personal brand might also have limitations. For example, it might be difficult to sell your business if you’re very tied into the branding of it.
If your name isn’t available in the ideal domain extension that you want, there is another option you could consider which is a sort of semi-personal branding.
You could combine your name with the industry or your topic of interest. So for example, michealfitness.com or WorkoutWithMicheal.com
2. It’s okay to be creative, but think brandable
Another option rather than choosing obvious keyword domain names, is to try to create a name that’s brandable.
For example, think about Amazon, Uber or Google. They don’t have any direct association with what they do, but they are highly powerful brands.
I would encourage you to experiment with something brandable. What’s much more important is your ability to create a brand around your chosen name.
Instead of trying to attain perfection, think creative.
3. Take the pressure off yourself. Ask your ideal clients
Sometimes we just can’t figure it all out ourselves. Because you’ve been thinking and overthinking the name so much, try asking previous clients which you feel are your ideal clients that you’d like to work with in the future.
They might not know what your long term plan is, but they will know what resonates more with them and help you get out of your thinking process and may help you decide.
Just try asking 2–5 people whom you trust and see what their opinions are. You don’t ultimately have to go with what they say, but at least you’ll have a better idea.
4. Think shorter and mobile first
You might imagine that your clients will be accessing your website on their desktop or laptop from home. But the reality today is that they’re more likely to be on the go. They will be standing in a queue browsing online from a coffee shop and your website will appear on their mobile device.
Because people don’t have long attention spans, we often don’t have much time to make an impression these days. This is why shorter can appear better on mobile devices. But again, remember that the length of the domain isn’t everything.
Also bear in mind that a shorter domain can sometimes lose its pronounceability.
5. Domain Name Likeability?
This is often overlooked but one of the most important things to consider when choosing your domain name. Ultimately it’s important to ask yourself, do you actually like this domain name?
It really sounds obvious, but very often overlooked when we’re frantically trying to think of new ideas for domain names.
At the very least ask yourself if you could grow to like your domain name once you’ve decided on something.
Choosing a domain name seems to be more of an art than a science. It can be stressful but it doesn’t have to be.
A personal brand is a powerful option today, but equally, you can get really creative with the process.
Remember that it’s what we do AFTER we’ve chosen the domain name that really matters more than the actual choice of the domain name itself.
Sometimes choosing a domain name becomes a distraction in itself, because we want to avoid the mundane and challenging aspects of building a real business.
There’s no one answer for the perfect domain name, but always choose something that you actually like because ultimately you’re the one that has to make it happen.
HAPPY SEARCHING! 🙂